Is Marvel Planning a Big 616/Ultimate Dust-Up For Another Relaunch? Survey Says… Yes [Updated]

You know what’s fun? Putting together puzzles! Lets do that now.

Puzzle Piece #1: Marvel Summit “Leaks”

Over on Bleeding Cool (of course) after the Marvel Summit, we had the rumor that a big Avengers vs Ultimates mini was coming that would hail the end of the Ultimate Universe. It wouldn’t be particularly surprising if the Ultimate line ended; it has been a shadow of itself for better or worse for some time, with “Ultimate Spider-Man” being the only rock in a rough storm.

If Marvel did something to end it, I doubt many people would be shocked (although losing Miles would probably cause some ruckus. I know I’d complain.)

Puzzle Piece #2: Sam Humphries Leaves “Ultimates,” Fialkov Disassembles – With the latest “Ultimate” launch, Jonathan Hickman was at the helm of the series and he tore the world apart. Sam Humphries co-wrote the book with him for a bit before taking over, leading to the dismantling of the Ultimate United States of America even further. Humphries’ run then ended with this month’s #24, and Josh Fialkov takes over next month with issue #25.

Fialkov’s first order of business? “Ultimate Avengers: Disassembled.” Hulk gets the Infinity Gauntlet. Bad things happen.

Given the amount of Thanos-pushing that Marvel is doing with “Infinity” and “Thanos Rising”, it seems miiiiiighty convenient that his main toy of choice happens to finally form in the Ultimate U, even if a) Thanos has appeared before in “Ultimate Fantastic Four” and b) Humphries was seeding the gems into the book for a while. But, to be fair, Humphries “Ultimates” at times seemed like a reflection of the popularity of Avengers, and that the Avengers ostensibly had the mind gem in the movie it’s not a big surprise that the Ultimate U would head in that direction as the inspiration for a lot of the action of that movie (Jackson’s Fury, Chitauri, etc).

Puzzle Piece #3: “Age of Ultron”, Angela and Multiple Realities – While “Age of Ultron” is raging on, we’ve seen that our heroes have ended up in a distorted version of their reality based on changing the past. While we don’t know the ending fully, we do know one thing: Angela shows up — and that, for all intents and purposes, seems a grand impossibility of “Marvel Universe/Continuity Logic” (all in quotes because, well, come on).

Of course, Angela is a character from “Spawn” and not actually a resident of the Marvel 616 by any means, so something has to happen to get her into the Marvel U — say, some kind of breakdown of walls that keep universes apart. And if one universal wall can breakdown, especially in terms of a wall separating two universes that have NEVER touched before, certainly another wall of universes that HAVE touched before could equally breakdown.

And, hey, didn’t we totally say that it looked like “Age of Ultron” was bringing some kind of Ultimate clash back in February, in the same general time period of Bleeding Cool’s Avengers v Ultimates rumor? Hey, we did! We were wrong about who that Wolverine was, but I’d wager we’re still on the right path.

Puzzle Piece #4: HUNGER U.C. – Last but certainly not least, we have the mysterious “Hunger” tease. Originally solicited as “Age of Ultron #10 U.C.”, we assumed it was something Galactus related — but as this month’s solicits have revealed, this book is actually:

HUNGER #2 (of 4)
• The fallout from AGE OF ULTRON rips open a dangerous rift in the universe!
• Prepare for a hunger so strong, that no universe is safe.
• Is this the beginning of the end?
• All the details will be revealed when Age of Ultron #10 hits stands everywhere!
32 PGS./Rated T+ …$3.99

And look at that. The writer of “Ultimates” is writing “Hunger,” a 4-issue mini whose solicit is tucked away nice and neat next to the three other Ultimate minis. And, hey, doesn’t Marvel have a history of publishing three “Ultimate” ongoings and one “Ultimate” 4-issue mini? They do?

And, just for posterity, do you think that “Age of Ultron #10 U.C.” could stand for “Age of Ultron #10 Epilogue Set In The Ultimate Comics Universe”? You do?

Ok then.

Update: User muddi900 points out that this could be related to Hunger, a character created by Jim Starlin who first appeared in “Thanos” (which Marvel is collecting soon), a reality devouring monster. Given the relationship to Thanos and the reality devouring bit, this seems like a completely logical addition to our puzzle.

Here’s the guess for the completed puzzle:

  • “Age of Ultron” breaks down some kind of universal wall between the 616 and the Ultimate world
  • The Avengers and the Ultimates clash
  • Something about the 616 Galactus probably wanting to eat the Ultimate Universe (as opposed the the Gah Lak Tus Swarm thing) to fit the “Hunger” stuff, because Marvel loves cosmic right now and/or something about the return of Hunger from Starlin’s “Thanos”
  • Maybe something about Angela too, because why not?
  • Marvel is able to destroy/rebuild the Ultimate Universe a bit

All of which results in all new #1s coming your way later this year/early next year for Ultimate Universe v4.0! Ultimate Marvel NOW!

Who wants to take that bet?

About The AuthorMatthew MeylikhovOnce upon a time, Matthew Meylikhov became the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Multiversity Comics, where he was known for his beard and fondness for cats. Then he became only one of those things. Now, if you listen really carefully at night, you may still hear from whispers on the wind a faint voice saying, "X-Men Origins: Wolverine is not as bad as everyone says it issss."

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User's Comments
  • BenditlikeBendis

    Yeah, I’d say that’s a pretty sure bet..I’d double down on that :)

    • Matthew Meylikhov

      Perfect name for a response, hahaha

  • Caanan Grall

    If they destroy the Ultimate U, you can bet Miles Morales will live on, but they’ll bring him over to the ‘real’ world. We’ve already seen in “Spider-Men” that Mysterio had already established a link between the two, and I could see Miles tracking that down and using it to get him and his family and close friends safely out of the universe before it implodes.

    • DavidMultiversity

      Agreed Caanan. Plus, Miles is too awesome to not keep. I personally wish his story could just exist in its own world, not to be touched by other comics and stories and continuity.

  • Battle_Royale

    It actually kind of sounds like they’re going to fold the Ultimate universe into the 616 universe and kill off any duplicates that they don’t need. Meaning Miles might end up being okay. Might be interesting.

    • Matthew Meylikhov

      “…kill off any duplicates…”

      Soooo, everyone but Miles? Haha.

      I’d wager that’s possibly right, though, sure.Seems fair enough to me.

  • malloc31

    This may make too much sense, but it would be cool if it ended up incorporating the stuff happening in New Avengers (earths crashing into one another and needing to destroy one to let the other live) and the ultimate and 616 earth started crashing into each other. Galactus may want to just eat the ultimate earth to preserve 616 reality, and then every one else in both realities tries to find a better way (after first fighting of coarse).

  • Matthew Barchers

    It could also tie in to X-Termination, the recent reality-tearing series that connected the Age of Apocalypse universe, the X-Treme X-Men, and Astonishing X-Men. The big bads are matter-consuming (”hungry”) entities that even the Celestials couldn’t kill, but the series is only going to be two issues, which seems more like a prologue to something bigger down the line.

  • muddi900

    Hunger could also refer to the reality devouring monster, appropriately called Hunger, created by Starlin in the early noughties:

    • Matthew Meylikhov

      And I see he’s related to Thanos, which would also make sense.

      • muddi900

        I just read the whole arc, I thought the idea was solid, but Starlin was too busy being…Starlin. Coupled with the fact that it was followed by a brilliant arc by Keith Giffen which lead into Annihilation, it becomes forgettable.

  • vjj

    I really don’t like the Ultimate Universe at all. Warren Ellis did 12 issues of Fantastic Four, and that was all I liked about the Ultimate Universe. I sincerely hope that NONE of the characters from the Ultimate Universe are folded into the Marvel-616 universe.

    Dan Slott’s Spider-man run has been superlative. It’s my favorite run since John Romita Jr’s early 1980’s run. And of course the best is Steve Ditko’s and John Romita’s run. By bringing Miles Morales into the 616, the editors would be disrupting what has been a glorious run by Dan Slott. It would be Bendis shitting all over what has been the best run of Spider-Man comics in DECADES. No one cares about the Ultimate Universe anymore and now Bendis wants to force his Spider-Man on everyone else. To Hell with Bendis and all his lovers on Marvel’s editorial board.

    So, yes, END the Ultimate Universe – but END ALL OF IT, don’t ruin what’s good about Marvel-616.

    • John

      Slott’s work has been abysmal. Horrible. The sooner he’s off the book, the better. What is taking place with Miles is so far beyond the garbage Slott is producing, it’s not even funny. The Doc Ock angle is so hackneyed, so pathetic, it reeks of the worst Soap Opera garbage out there.

  • Adam

    This is a natural reaction for Marvel to have to the unpopularity of the Ultimate Universe at this point. I fear for Miles entering the 616 and staying there, that’s for sure. Ideally, they just cancel the Ultimate titles that nobody cares about anymore, and Ultimate Spider-Man is able to go on, being the only book in that universe. I imagine Miles in the 616, and I shudder, remembering when they tried to move the Heroes Reborn Bucky/Nomad into the 616. Dull, pointless tedium.

  • rafamayu
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